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Old 28th Sep 2010, 16:45   #11
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Default Re: Spooks - SPOILERS

Quote:
Originally Posted by Colyngbourne View Post
I thought last night's episode was a bit awkward with the black titles of different people's POV - I could see that the way the plot was set-up it was going to be difficult to explain everyone's actions otherwise, but it was a bit artificial and repetitive.
I thought it was reasonably effective with the Lucas and Beth segments, but the Chapman one seemed a bit of an afterthought and didn't explain as much about his motivations as I would have liked.
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Old 8th Oct 2010, 14:09   #12
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Default Re: Spooks - SPOILERS

I'm no ono, but in her absence have tried to keep the thread ticking over:

Lucas is in Russia, doing his hands across the ocean bit with the FSB, as they attempt to destroy a deadly nerve agent, so that he can video it. Presumably MI5 have their own YouTube channel.

Seems this dangerous gloop (it should all have been officially destroyed in the 60s, which is the real reason Lucas is there to document it) is being held illegally by a rag-tag team of evil Azakstani nationalists, who are so evil and so nationalistic they have an acronym all their own, the AFF. Surprising them in their warehouse hideaway, the FSB seize the noxious chemical and incinerate it immediately. Phew. But that would be too straightforward for a pre-credit sequence and before we can get to the DUM-DUM music, the no nonsense rufty tufty FSB types have shot the AFF-ers in the back of the head, waving away Lucas's shocked "No!" protestations with a thees-is-how-we-do-things-in-Raahssia insouciance.

Back at Thames House, Harry and the gang are watching it all unfold on Tariq's many monitors of magical surveillance and notice that there is a stray AFF-er who has been watching from the wings, making good his escape. Oops. Before Tariq can tell Lucas, Harry has intervened. "The man just lost his country, I won't be responsible for him losing his life, too." I'm guessing Harry thinks the chap will slink away to some dark corner, but I'm fairly certain it may come back and bite him later.

Oh. It does.

The escaped AFF chap, a weasely, limping, lank-haired, pasty-faced poor excuse for a terrorist called Azis is sitting in another warehouse bemoaning his lot when an older chap turns up. He is ordered to London; the last of the nerve agent, Paroxocybin, hasn't been destroyed. There's still enough left to give the Azakstani's some leverage in discussions. I think we can see where this is going.

Azis turns up in London, but Section D are ahead of the game, due to the fact that they have to play nanny to a visiting FSB agent called Viktor. Viktor is about nine feet tall and made out of steel. He calls Harry 'Sir Ha-rree' at all times, despite our hero refusing to shake his hand. Tension? You have no idea.

Viktor briefs the team on Paroxocybin and it's not good. There are unnatural and involuntary issuings-forth involved (eww) but, fortunately, to hide one's embarrassment, a swift death. It's very unpleasant. There's a Powerpoint demo, but no smell-o-vision, so that's good.

Tariq performs another miracle, taking Azis's facial contours and feeding it into the CCTV datafeed around Vic Station, and they pick him up immediately. An infrared image tells them that he's carrying a refrigerated backpack. "Paroxocybin needs to be kept at -9 degrees," say Ruth. Shit the bed! Lucas, Plucky Beth, Dimitri and Steel-jawed Viktor take off into the streets.

Azis heads into the tube and there's a de Menezes-type frisson of tension on screen. Amid much confusion, Azis drops the bag and escapes. Such is the potential for contagion with the chemical Plucky Beth has to check the bag...if the stuff is leaking she dies, but Harry can seal the area. She looks good here and out-steels Viktor.

Fortunately, there's nothing in the bag. Everyone breaths again. So that means he was only preparing to pick it up! Tariq finds him again, heading for the University. Azis is hunting out an aged Prof, who turns out to be the brilliant Donald Sumpter who played sinister Dr Kemp in Being Human. He's effortlessly authoritative in these sorts of small, key roles, and there's no change here. The Prof has clearly got a screw loose because he thinks that Paroxocybin could be an agent for good, but back in the 60s, when he stole the last surviving vial of it, we just didn't know what that good was. Obviously he's chosen to ignore the abnormal pooing and the death aspects.

Azis sneakily finds out that the Prof has left information about the sample with his daughter Meg and after handing out a beating heads off to sort her out, too. Lucas, Plucky Beth and the very suspicious Viktor are in hot pursuit.

Meg turns out to be a pale-but-interesting bit of posh totty in a rather smart apartment, who initially seems up to Azis's techniques, but when he starts drowning her in the standalone bath things get more ragged. When things get particularly hairy, she calls the Prof, who happens to be in an interrogation room with Harry and Ruth, but all they do is tell one another to keep the faith. Yikes. That's some belief.

Azis thinks he's drowned Meg and runs off, only to be nabbed by Lucas and Plucky Beth. Beth looks rather foxy in black; cold-eyed and tooled-up. I may have to go into therapy.

Viktor discovers Meg in the bathroom and revives her. She tells him she didn't tell Azis anything, and he accepts that, but then he rolls his sleeves up and tells her she'll certainly tell him. When Lucas and Beth arrive, Meg is dead and Viktor says he couldn't save her. Lucas doesn't let on but doesn't believe him and thus changes the rules of the game immediately. He tells Viktor Azis escaped. It's obvious the Russians are using MI5 to do all the detective work to find the Paroxocybin. Time to get sneaky.

First, Harry and Ruth have to find out where the stuff really is, so they play the Prof with a simple double bluff, telling him that Meg spilled the beans to Azis, but then died. This would be transparent and lazy in anyone else's hands but with Nicola Walker, Peter Firth and Donald Sumpter it is masterly, touching, filled with pathos. Spooks is very fortunate to be able to hide the pitfalls of its often hokey plots behind such presence. The Prof obliges and away to a cryogenics lab in darkest Mile End we go.

It's all a set up, of course. Azis watches the handover of a decoy batch of the nerve agent and then follows Viktor, wearing a rather obvious and faintly ridiculous shoulder cam, and Lucas inside where the real operation will take place. Viktor is impressed that Lucas has arranged a decoy and feels relaxed. Pfft! Up pops Azis, ambushes the guys and makes off with the package. Lucas is out of it. Viktor gives chase and corners him on the rooftop. This couldn't be better; no Mi5 to witness, the gloop supposedly being already taken away to be destroyed and the nasty Azakstani rebel all to himself. After a bit of triumphalist snarling, Lucas arrives to tidy things up plotwise and ensure that we know it's all been a cunning plan to get them together and show how clever he's been. Viktor shoots Azis and looks up to see Plucky Beth has arrived. She tells Viktor that she knows he killed Meg and gives him the good news in the chest. Ha!

Back in Whitehall, Harry is showing the Home Sec and the Russian Ambassador a doctored version of Viktor's video which indicates Azis shooting Viktor and then scarpering. The Russians swallow it and are forced to rein back their threats to the Azakstanis, not knowing if they're going to be subject to a Paroxocybin attack at any time. Harry says nice things about Viktor and gives him a posthumous medal. Win win.

Harry, of course, is too decent to allow his lie to the Prof stand and so he and Ruth tell him that Meg hadn't given up the info and they just said that to trick him. When Ruth tells Harry later that the Prof could ruin his career, Harry looks her in the eye and says, "sometimes you just have to give a man a chance". Ouch. Cue piano.

Back at Lucas's, the gorgeous Maya turns up, calling him John again, and then jumps on his bones. Hop on, love, but watch out...might get a bit bumpy.


come back soon, ono!
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Old 10th Oct 2010, 12:40   #13
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Default Re: Spooks - SPOILERS

Heh, did you think I could really resist? Two for the price of one then, this week!

Episode 3. SPOILERS, naturally.

The Set-Up. We're in Azakhstan. Men in biohazard suits break into a warehouse, co-ordinated by a Man in a Van. We need a briefing from the Grid to tell us what the hell is going on. Obligingly, they tell us that the men are the Azakhstan Freedom Front or AFF and are looking for a lethal nerve agent that was created during the cold war, called Paroxocybin. Back at the scene, the men find a container with big Biohazard symbols on. This confirms they are correctly dressed for the occasion and they are very self-congratulatory. Prematurely, because there is gunfire and the biohaz masks are now drenched in blood. Turns out there's another group of men, with guns, dressed more in a ninja style, which probably isn't so effective for keeping out the biohazard but is very good for creeping up on people. They take off their balaclavas and I am jolted to see that one of them is Lucas.

Retrospective Reveal. The AFF are a terrorist organisation and the black clad men are FSB (what we all used to know as KGB). Lucas is there because Harry doesn't trust the Russians. To keep them decent, as it were. Doesn't work, because once they have destroyed the nerve agent and the other AFF men are taken prisoner, the FSB men summarily execute the prisoners. Harry, in the middle of a rant about 'see what happens when you co-operate with the Russians' is interrupted by Tariq telling him that there is another AFF man making off. Harry lets him go. Good thing really, or this episode would have been five minutes of action followed by fifty minutes of the guys at the Grid making tea and bitching about the Russians.

The Home Secretary wants Harry to take an FSB agent onto the team. "FSB at Thames House?!" Harry is incredulous. I have to say I'm with Harry on this one. Nevertheless, a man with a sharp suit, even sharper eyebrows and a comedy russian accent turns up at Thames house. I can't remember his name. Sergei or Alexei or some such, I should think. Let's go with Sergei.

The escaped AFF man, Aibek Azis, has a mentor who tells him that the only other Paroxocybin in existence is in London. Tariq tracks him down, by mapping his features against those of millions of Londoners who are currently walking past CCTV cameras, an hour after he gets there, which seems like pretty good going to me. He produces a thermal image (thermal CCTV cameras?!) showing that Azis's rucksack is insulated at below zero degrees. Our FSB agent makes the somewhat extended leap of logic that this must mean he already has the Paraxocybin. Either that, or he's shown a little foresight for storing it when he does get it, eh Sergei?

On the assumption that Azis is carrying a deadly nerve agent which could wipe out London, the team chases him to Charing Cross tube station, believing he's about to release the stuff on the Tube. Harry orders the station to be locked down. Ruth points out that a thousand people will be trapped. Harry says they're as good as dead anyway if the Paroxocybin is released. But Harry, if what we've been told about Paroxocybin is true, unless Transport for London has instigated a method of hermetically sealing off any given Tube station, isn't everyone in London as good as dead? *shivers*

Dimitri is in the same carriage as Azis, but says he hasn't got a clear line of sight to the target (i.e. he would have to shoot through several innocent bodies to get a bullet into Azis). When next the doors open (doesn't Harry's lockdown extend to the trains?) they manage to divest Azis of his rucksack but he gets away. Beth proves herself in possession of a fine pair of lungs "Security Services - CLEAR THE PLATFORM!!!" Amazingly, people do. Beth bends over the rucksack making a face which manages to convey 'I'm about to find out if I and and all my colleagues are already effectively dead' only to discover that there's nothing in the rucksack.

Azis is headed to the University (I'm not sure which University, I should really pay more attention) to seek out an old colleague of his mentor. Dr Kirby, who is possibly the only person who now knows the location of the remaining Paroxocybin, is unhelpful, even when Azis has beaten his face to a bloody pulp. Azis attempts a subterfuge whereby he pretends to leave, knowing that Dr Kirby will call his daughter, Meg, who could provide further torture-related leverage. He whacks the Doctor over the head, steals his phone, and manages to inveigle his way into the daughter's flat. Further torture yields no results. Perhaps a stubborn streak runs in their family.

After being almost-drowned several times, Meg goes limp. She may be dead. Azis doesn't have time to check because the agents have made it to the apartment. He flees. Beth and Sergei find Meg, who coughs up a lot of water and is alive! Hooray! Beth leaves Meg in Sergei's capable hands. Eek.

Lucas and Dimitri have caught Asiz. Lucas goes to find Sergei who is sitting having a fag over the dead body of Meg. Sergei lies to Lucas about how Meg died. Lucas lies to Sergei about having caught Azis.

So now the grid has Azis, and they have Dr Kirby, to whom they tell a cruel tale about his daughter having given up the location of the Paroxocybin. So now Dr Kirby thinks he has to tell them where it is so that they can prevent Azis getting hold of it. By now of course, the team is pretty convinced that the FSB man intends to acquire, rather than destroy, the nerve agent.

The Paraxocybin is apparently found and despatched to a secure location for its safe destruction. When Sergei protests that he must accompany it to witness the destruction, he is told by Lucas that it was only a decoy. Lucan then leads him to the real Paraxocybin. Azis then appears and with remarkable ease, pinches the canister containing the nerve agent.

Chase is given, naturally, and a mini psychodrama plays itself out on the roof. Sergei shoots Aziz, then points the gun at Lucas. As I'm wondering how this is going to play out, Sergei is shot, and as our viewpoint swings around, we see it is Beth who has done the dastardly deed. Yay Beth!

Somehow, a tape of all this acquired, but when it is played back to the Home Sec and Russian Ambassador, it has transmogrified into a totally differenct sequence of events whereby Sergei has heroically been shot trying to protect his country from a terrorist. Oh Harry, that was naughty, but we can't help admiring you for it.

AOB: Lucas and Maya have their first snog. Lucas says "I'm never going to disappear again, ever." A brave boast, Lucas, considering your line of work.

Ruth thinks it might have been reckless of Harry to tell Dr Kirby that they did not in fact destroy the Paraxocybin, but have stored it at Porton Down. Harry gives her a significant look. "You have to give a man a chance, Ruth. To show you who he really is."

Last edited by ono no komachi; 11th Oct 2010 at 10:46.
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Old 11th Oct 2010, 10:40   #14
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thank goodness you're back!
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Old 12th Oct 2010, 20:24   #15
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Default Re: Spooks - SPOILERS

Episode 4. Spoilers as usual.

Dover. St Pancras International. Heathrow. Three people arrive in the country. They are of East Asian appearance - very likely they are British, in fact we are shown that at least one of them has a British passport. As supporting evidence that he's British, he has a crate of booze in the back of his car.

We see the three get together over a cache of small arms - guns, grenades. The guy with the booze remarks on how little trouble he had at customs, and jokes about the customs officer: "He's lucky I'm not a terrorist!"

Cue opening titles.

The 3 have not gone as unnoticed as they think. Security Services are onto them. They have 'intel' (I love this abbreviation, I may start using in ordinary conversation) that the new arrivals are Chinese State Security (CSS). The Grid makes it its business to find out what they're up to, but they appear to be intending to leave in only three days, so the team don't have much time.

Beth has a friend, Kai, who works in the Chinese embassy, whom she is trying to get to embrace democracy in China. He calls her 'Claire'. All is made clear when Harry decribes him as her 'asset'. Lucas has an asset too, but he doesn't think he can turn his asset. Beth's asset is much riper for the turning, and she's confident that she can do it. She's going to work on her asset until Kai is putty in her hands and comes through with the intel they need.

That's all very well, but they need intel now. Lucas and Dimitri decide to break into the Chinese Embassy. They wear their ninja outfits for the occasion. Am I being picky to suspect that even in the dark, two men in black abseiling down the front of a white, presumably pretty well-lit, building in central London, whatever time of night, might attract attention?

Tariq has hacked into the Embassy security system and allowed them a generous 1.8 seconds to get into the building. Handily, the room they've got into has the Embassy's data archives lying around on portable media ripe for the pinching. Beth gets a call from Kai, who seems to be on her side after all - he tells her that the Embassy knows there are intruders and with a little pressure, gives out that there is a single exit onto the roof that isn't alarmed. Cue Lucas and Dimitri running up stairs, which is frankly something I can never get enough of.

But they're running out of time and Lucas needs to create a diversion to allow Dimitri to escape with the data. He gets Ruth to call the police pretending to be a member of the public who's seen someone breaking into the Embassy. Then when the Embassy staff grab him, he puts on an unconvincing accent. "Honest guv'nor, I 'ad no idea this buildin' was... wotever it is." Then the police arrive and Lucas gets to walk out through the front door with them in his burglar disguise.

Brilliant, brilliant Ruth gets to work on the disks. They're pretty heavily encrypted, but she works out that 'Amphitrite' is a recurring theme in the files. Fortunately not everyone else at Thames House has had Ruth's classical education so we get an explanation that Amphitrite was Poseidon's wife. I think Ruth's brilliance is dazzling me slightly, because I am a bit hazy on how she manages to link this to a UK technology company, QMK, developing new desalination techniques. It seems industrial espionage is the game this time.

They need data from QMK. It would take Tariq weeks to hack their network (all credit to QMK, Tariq seems to be able to hack most things within about 30 seconds) so they need someone in the building. Tariq finds out that they need a new interpreter, due to start the next day. Turns out Ruth speaks Mandarin and Cantonese passably ("My Wu is horrible though.")

In the meantime Beth has used a little reverse psychology on Kai to get him to commit to helping her. He comes up trumps by revealing a plot by the Chinese to attack the QMK building. As the building's being evacuated, Ruth discover's QMK's secret weapon: a Chinese scientist called Dr Li Jiang, who is the brains behind the desalination project.She finds her guarded by the CIA. ("Mauve, Nine, Pelican." "Gold, Five, Cormorant." "Reverend Green, Library, Lead Piping.")

Can I say at this point that I love the fact that while Lucas and Beth have boring codenames like 'Alpha one' and 'Alpha two', Ruth's codename is 'Gazelle'? That's just lovely.

The CAI and MI5 are going to take Jiang to a safe house. Call me suspicious, but whenever I'm watching Spooks and I hear the words 'safe house' I have a feeling of foreboding. But apparently the CIA's safe houses are so safe that they don't even know where they are until five minutes before they get there. They squeal into an underground car park. Lucas asks how they got the location. "GPS, from our people." Lucas: "But we jammed the signal!"

The clever Chinese have misdirected them. It seems that Kai was a triple agent, pretending to co-operate with MI5 but actually working for his government all along. It seems... but then Beth discovers the Chinese are bugging Kai. They have actually deliberately fed him misinformation to feed to MI5.

The team manage to get Jiang away from the misdirected location, but the Chinese head of intelligence is putting pressure on Harry by telling him there is a vehicle bomb in a busy part of the city. The Home Sec (who we hope by now is over his hangover) tells Harry to hand over Jiang. Harry plays for time, and we get a classic 'finding the bomb, racing to the bomb, defusing the bomb' scenario. ("You're telling me to melt part of the big bomb?!") The bomb is defused before the Chinese get their scientist, and the day is saved.

All is not quite neat and tidy, however. Lucas has incriminated an innocent young Thames House employee by stealing his logon and accessing the file that Vaughn asked him for (finishing the job by transferring large amounts of money into the victim's bank account to make the incrimination even more convincing). And the chinese agents do not leave the country as expected, but now appear to have another job to do... involving Lucas. Eek.

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Old 13th Oct 2010, 10:30   #16
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Default Re: Spooks - SPOILERS

I loved this episode but for the fact of Lucas's naivete with Maya. For all his years in MI5 and other organisations, I found it implausible the way he had been scripted to find her in broad daylight (in the middle of her shift as a doctor) simply to say they can safely be together. The Lucas from last season would not have been so naive, and I think this element of the plotting doesn't work: he and we both know she's likely to snuff it before the end of the season/she's making him vulnerable etc. But other than that, Ruth excelled in this episode and poor Kai's story was tense and moving.
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Old 13th Oct 2010, 10:30   #17
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Default Re: Spooks - SPOILERS

I loved this episode but for the fact of Lucas's naivete with Maya. For all his years in MI5 and other organisations, I found it implausible the way he had been scripted to find her in broad daylight (in the middle of her shift as a doctor) simply to say they can safely be together. The Lucas from last season would not have been so naive, and I think this element of the plotting doesn't work: he and we both know she's likely to snuff it before the end of the season/she's making him vulnerable etc. But other than that, Ruth excelled in this episode and poor Kai's story was tense and moving.
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Old 13th Oct 2010, 10:33   #18
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Default Re: Spooks - SPOILERS

I have to give credit for this to the Guardian Spooks blog. I recognised the picture in the Albany file, that Vaughn was demanding from Lucas, as a Turner but not the specific picture title.

Apparently it's The Battle of Trafalgar, including Nelson's flag message 'England expects every man to do his duty.' I look forward to finding out its significance.
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Old 13th Oct 2010, 13:24   #19
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Ruth just gets better and better, doesn't she? I love how she leaves a pause after mentioning Amphitrite, giving her colleagues enough credit to recognise the name, and then the look of teacherly disappointment when she realises they're just not in her league. Actually, if her league blew up they wouldn't see the explosion for two years.

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Old 20th Oct 2010, 11:38   #20
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Episode 5.
 
Whitehall. Harry, immaculate as always, strides down one of the impressive corridors. He's on his way to see the Home Secretary, who tells him that Operation Horizon is on, and will happen in the next few days. Towers is optimistic about the success of the project, despite the fact that it involves bringing Israeli and Palestinian statesmen together for peace talks. He thinks the identity of the chair for the meetings is the key. Codenamed Lighthouse, the chair is to be the President of the United States.
 
Lebanon. The caption tells us it is a terrorist camp. A man takes a call. His contact knows about Operation Horizon, including the identity of the chair. That's pretty speedy, seeing as Harry has only just found out. Is someone on the inside passing information?
 
Cue opening titles.
 
Back at the Grid. Harry is briefing everyone on the Dramatis Personae. On the Israeli side, Levi Cohen and his daughter Anna. Harry seems to be chums with Mr Cohen (I bet they were at Cambridge together) and reveals that Cohen and his daughter have been estranged since he refused to mount a rescue operation when she was being held and tortured by dissidents. "They don't get on."
 
Beth and Dimitri are assigned false identities as 'Home Office Liaison' and sent off to protect the Palestinian and Israeli delegations respectively. "Hello, I'm Richard Fox from the Home Office," says Dimitri. "No you're not, you're Dimitri Levendis from the Security Services," says Anna Cohen. Or words to that effect. She lets him stay anyway, since he does look rather good in his smart suit.
 
The cybergeeks get wind of some emails that appear to know about Op Horizon. They are coming from Lebanon, apart from the most recent ones, which are from an internet café in Paddington. Apparently The Grid can view the Browsing History of any PC in any given Intenet café in the country. So much for In-Private Browsing, hey Mr Gates? The Grid is not big on civil liberties.
 
The emails were being sent to journalist Dana Morrison. She's hauled in and... What? Hauled over the coals? Charged under the Official Secrets Act? No, Ruth gives her a coffee and appeals to her better nature. It seems to be working.
 
Across London, we see a man stick a device to a floor-to-ceiling plate glass window. Hmmm.
 
The Browsing History has revealed a booking in a Paddington hostel. Lucas heads off to 'do a sweep' of the room (translation: have a jolly good look around). He's tipped off by slight damage on the corner of a wardrobe, shifts it, and finds taped to the back a bag containing a blank passport, a notebook and lots of ammunition, but no weapon. I'm impressed by his powers of deduction; for me, damaged furniture would simply tell me I was in a budget hotel in London.
 
He streams video of the arabic writing back to Tariq (would it not have been easier to take a still photo?) Handily, it contains an address. 16 Alexandra Gardens. Off you leap, Lucas! There hasn't been enough running yet. At the target address he finds a laptop stuffed under a mattress. Into his rucksack it goes, and out of the window he goes. Only to find the Lebanese chap on the way to the flat. Lucas gives chase while calling in a description back to the team "jeans, green jacket..." Rounding a corner, the putative terrorist renders himself unrecognisable by the simple expedient of discarding his jacket in a skip and pulling on a flat cap. If only he could find himself a whippet on a string, his disguise would be complete.
 
But the terrorist's nerve doesn't hold and he bolts again, enabling Lucas to chase him into a dark underpass. He's good, this guy - he just disappears. Lucas know's he's in trouble and sure enough, there's the click of a gun being cocked and a disembodied voice tells him to throw away his gun. Lucas complies, and the Lebanese guy drops down from his elevated hiding place. Lucas isn't giving up that easily, and there's a struggle. The Lebanese is a tough customer, and uses his belt as a weapon, managing to get it around Lucas' neck, and tightening, tightening... Bloody hell, could this be the end of Lucas? Lucas collapses, but is still breathing. His attacker seems satisfied with that and runs off.
 
Beth is back at the fancy hotel to be used for the talks. She checks out a workman tinkering with a CCTV camera. Noting that his ID badge says his name is Feliciano Gutierrez, she tests him by speaking in Spanish. His reply seems genuine. She turns away, only to be grabbed from behind and bundled into his van. He's not just an opportunistic kidnapper, he's a terrorist! Yet again I wonder if we are going to lose a team member. Damn you, Spooks, for making me so insecure about the fate of TV characters!
 
Back at Thames House, the team interrogates the laptop that Lucas has recovered. ("Now then, laptop, where were you on the night of 14th October?") They discover that it contains the exact itinerary of the US President. This seems to confirm that an assassination attempt is planned. They have also identified Lucas's attacker as Muatt Hutri, a high-profile Islamist terrorist leader, and begin to track him across London. Something odd is going on... he's getting closer and closer to Thames House... he's right outside! I must go a little easier on the exclamation marks!!!
 
Surrounded by armed agents, Hutri starts to unbutton his shirt. I begin to think perhaps he has a bomb strapped to himself, but Lucas helpfully explains that he's stripping off in order to show that he's not a suicide bomber. He is of course brought inside for interrogation. He claims to be there in order to stop the assassination. He says the assassin is one Baltasar Jad, and that he was on his way to kill Jad when he was intercepted by Lucas. He doesn't want Islam to be further demonised by the assassination of the US President.
 
Jad is the man who has Beth. She's still alive, but helplessly tied to the central heating pipes. Jad takes out a knife, and makes a deep slicing cut into his own leg. Then he disappears. Beth sees a jack in the room and manages to hoick it over towards the pipes to which she's tied. She manages to ratchet up the jack under the pipes until they pop, spraying her with scalding water. Ouch. She has to slide her tied hands over the end of the pipe which is gushing steam and hot water. Double ouch. But she's away, and next thing is accosting a gang of yoofs for a phone. They look at her askance. Seriously, don't mess with Beth, guys. She gets in touch with Lucas and tells him Jad is on his way to hospital.
 
There's only one hospital in the vicinity of the hotel, and it's 1.67 miles away, and there's a high-rise building between it and the hotel. Surely he can't cause any mischief from there? It's now that we're reminded of the device on the plate glass window. Out go the windows and Jad theoretically has a clear path for a bullet from the roof of the hospital to the hotel. The US president is told to use the tradesman's entrance to the hotel, so it seems that particular Home Office embarrassment is dodged, but what of the other delegates?
 
Lucas manages to take out Jad, but not before the shooting has started. The Palestinian second-in-command is wounded, but not fatally.
 
Dimitri goes in search of Anna, on whom he has a little crush. But something's wrong. Lots of empty insulin syringes (she's diabetic) in her basin. An overdose? Why? He sniffs a syringe. Liquid explosive. She's turned herself into a walking bomb. He finds her and tries to talk her out of detonating the explosive. His team keeps trying to persuade him to get out, but that would mean allowing Anna to blow herself up and Dimitri can't quite bring himself to do that. By an act of remarkable prestidigitation he manages to get the detonator removed from Anna's wrist, and once again, the day is saved.
 
Why did she want to assassinate the US President? "To show the world that the enemies of Israel will never be safe." Chilling.
 
Post script. Presumably to celebrate another successful mission, Lucas heads to Maya's house. "Michael's here," she hisses. Michael? The boyfriend, I assume. Michael comes into the hallway. It's Lucas's blackmailer, Vaughn, looking somewhat cleaner and healthier than we're used to. Interesting...
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